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  • Mikayla Crkvenac

PCMG: What Makes It So Fun!


Making homemade slime
Homework Club at the Mustard Seed Manchester Location

In Calgary, we hold a variety of free programs for families and the city's vulnerable people. One of our most popular programs is the Parent-Child Mother Goose (PCMG). PCMG is a program that creates a fun learning environment for families through rhymes, stories, songs, and discussions of various parenting topics. Through these activities, parents can nurture their children and help them flourish. The PCMG program also provides opportunities for parents to establish strong relationships with their peers. Various community partners such as recreation centres, community centres, low-income housing, and immigrant location services host the PCMG program in Calgary.




What Are Nursery Rhymes?

Nursery rhymes are simple songs or poems typically sung by a parent or guardian to their child. Many factors play into these nursery rhymes: facial expressions, which can encourage children to stay engaged. Different gestures, sounds, and matching actions with the rhymes help develop the child’s motor skills by showing body awareness and better body coordination.


Another way to teach these rhymes is through videos and practising singing or speaking them. Playing songs on the radio or T.V. can also actively engage a child in listening and learning, whether they are paying attention or used for background noise.


You may be wondering, what is the point of these nursery rhymes? Keep reading, and we’ll go into further detail as they can benefit you as a parent and how these rhymes help develop your child’s early learning!



Benefits of Rhymes for Your Child:

Nursery rhymes provide several benefits for your child’s development. Nursery rhymes contribute to a child’s ability to learn early literacy skills such as speech. It encourages the repetition of vowel sounds and similar patterns that children may soon be able to identify and eventually repeat. By repeating these rhymes to your child and having the child practice them each time, your child forms familiar sounds to improve speech development. These nursery rhymes also encourage children to develop other skills, such as listening, as they will begin to be able to differentiate between sounds and different skills in the music of words.


When nursery rhymes are sung with accompanying actions, it encourages the child to be more aware of hand, foot, and eye coordination. The child concentrates harder on what moves go with the right words.


Benefits of Nursery Rhymes for Parents

While many benefits come with teaching children nursery rhymes, these techniques are also a tool to improve communication. Nursery rhymes help a parent’s ability to focus on their children and enhance the parent's spatial intelligence. By repeating these rhymes, parents can better their memory.


Storytime
Storytime

Story-Telling in Parent-Child Mother Goose

During PCMG sessions, facilitators bring meaningful books for the group. These stories are brought to the group to highlight different types of families, the acceptance of making mistakes, or even demonstrate a parent/child's love for each other. As well, during story time, parents are encouraged to follow along with their children to help develop their nurture literacy development.


What Are the Benefits of Books?

Reading words on a page isn't the only way to engage with a book. Looking at the pictures, asking questions, or even making up an entirely new story to accompany the illustrations also engages readers. Some may prefer to read word for word, and others may want to make up their own story. The encouragement from picking up a book spikes a child’s interest in creativity and exploration. By doing so, parents can nurture their imagination.


Books are also a great way to introduce words and sounds to children. Children can begin to learn to attach meaning to words and pictures from the book’s illustrations and sentences.


No matter how you decide to read a book with your child, have fun with it as your child begins to engage in the book. This will further develop their literacy skills. No matter how you decide to read with your child, it is essential to just get them reading! It will help develop their literacy skills.


Our facilitators do a great job of demonstrating different fun ways of reading. One of the ways is by having a story time session. While sitting around each other, each parent/child is often given a book to follow along. Our members and facilitators take turns practising reading the pages and engaging both the parents and the children in the book Through the book, facilitators encourage children to point out objects they may see. This could be what colours, shapes, and themes they may find. All parents and children are encouraged to read together to nurture an environment where people feel encouraged to learn!


Playdough for some sensory learning
Playdough for some sensory learning

Why We Incorporate Crafts into Parent-Child Mother Goose

Crafts are another great way to encourage fine motor skills in your child. Getting their hands on objects such as pencils, paintbrushes, and other materials can help children learn with their hands and strengthen their physical abilities. By practising these skills, children will be able to learn sooner how to do other tasks, such as tying shoes. Although crafts can be good for children at a physical level, they also promote creativity. In PCMG, we strive for children and parents to embrace their authenticity and individuality so that they can better express themselves. What could be a better way to do so than to enjoy it with crafts! Through crafting, children can begin exploring many senses, such as smell, touch, hearing, sight, and taste.


If you would like to learn more about our PCMG or all of our free programs hosted around Calgary, visit: https://www.furthered.ca/learner-information. If you are interested in our PCMG program, contact blu@furthered.ca or call us at 403-250-5034.

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